The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has notified Congress of a potential foreign military sale (FMS) of MH-60R helicopter fleet sustainment support to Australia. 

The estimated $162m sale has also received approval from the US State Department.

As part of this sale package, the Australian Government has requested to purchase additional non-major defence equipment (MDE) MH-60R sustainment equipment and services.

The items and services will be added to the original implemented case, which included MH-60R multi-mission helicopter sustainment support. The original FMS was valued at $89.8m.

Prime contractor for the latest non-MDE FMS will be Lockheed Martin.

DSCA said in a statement: “This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security objectives of the US. Australia is one of our most important allies in the Western Pacific.

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“The strategic location of this political and economic power contributes significantly to ensuring peace and economic stability in the region.

“It is vital to the US national interest to assist our ally in developing and maintaining a strong and ready self-defence capability.”

Furthermore, the latest potential deal will continue to provide capability to Australia for undertaking multiple operations together with the US military forces.

It will also allow the Australian forces to maintain mission readiness to counter various regional adversaries and bolster homeland defence capability.

This sale is in alignment with the US Navy’s MH-60R Seahawk helicopter programme. 

Last month, the US Navy awarded a contract to Lockheed Martin company Sikorsky for the production and delivery of a total of 12 additional MH-60R Seahawk helicopters to the Royal Australian Navy.

The company will deliver all the MH-60R helicopters to the RAN between mid-2025 and mid-2026.